Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Like A Bird Set Free

Once upon a time I was going to be a singer. As a little girl, through my teenage years and through early adulthood I dreamed of a career in music. There was nothing I loved more than music, but I especially loved good vocals and good lyrics (this was my first insight into a passion I was yet to discover—writing).
My love for music led to a girl group with a couple of my friends, which led to ultimately meeting my husband—an amazing singer and music producer. But that’s where the dream stalls forever.  Though I loved singing and I spent hours upon hours in my room singing, there was one thing that came between me and my dream--Self-sabotage.

I allowed my negative talk to stop me from singing my song, from pursuing the dream in my heart. All I wanted was to sing, and to sing well. I didn’t even care if I made it famous, I just wanted to sing. But the more love I felt for singing, the more doubt I poured into myself. I would constantly say that I couldn’t sing. I would declare it to the world and felt sorry for myself for it. I hated that I was given this passion for singing yet I couldn’t fulfill it. How unfair, I thought.

After a while I laid the dream to rest and I went on with my life. Along the way I discovered another passion, writing. Looking back, I was able to see how writing had always been a part of my life, but I was too busy paying attention to how unfair life was (giving me a passion I couldn’t fulfill). But something interesting happened. The more I started falling in love with writing, a familiar voice emerged and I started self-sabotaging this dream too. Things like, “I’m not good enough.” “I can’t write. Look at this, I did it again! Another typo.” “CAN I SPELL?” I mean on an on… It was so bad that when I first joined social media I wouldn’t write anything because I was afraid I was going to say it “wrong.”  It was like I didn’t know how to talk. Suddenly every choice of word seemed like the wrong one. This way of thinking almost stopped me in my tracks again, stalling yet another dream.

Thankfully, I picked up on this destructive behavior and decided, NOPE! Not again. I will not do this to myself again. And I went for it. I began writing posts on social media, and if I made a mistake I didn’t care. Then I began to blog. Then I finished my first young adult novel More Than Words Can Say, a fantasy novel based loosely on that experience of joining a girl group and meeting an enigmatic music producer. Since then I’ve written two other novels, one that will be released this year!
Recently I’ve been obsessed with Sia’s new album Alive and her song "Bird Set Free". The lyrics speak to me in a special way:
“And I don't care if I sing off key
I find myself in my melodies
I sing for love, I sing for me
I shout it out like a bird set free”

These lyrics inspire me because I can relate. Many times we allow our imperfections to stop us from chasing that thing that lights us up. But if we could just see that no one is perfect, even those that we deem as such, we wouldn’t let our insecurities prevent us from doing what we love. I allowed my insecurities to stop me once, but never again.

So if I don’t use a properly placed comma. Or if I accidentally use the wrong word. Or if I don’t use quotation marks correctly, I don’t care. This is me. I’m not perfect and I’m okay with that. I write because it makes me happy. I feel closer to the real me when I write. I write with love, I write for me. I'll shout it out like a bird set free!
Have a listen to Bird Set Free
Till Next Time!

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